Today in Music History: The Clash went No. 1 with 'Should I Stay or Should I Go'

the clash
The Clash. (Courtesy of the artist, via NPR)

History Highlight

Today in 1991, "Should I Stay Or Should I Go" gave The Clash their only U.K. No. 1 single. Although the track was originally released in 1982 as part of the Clash's Combat Rock album, "Should I Stay or Should I Go" re-entered the public consciousness after the track was used in a TV commercial for Levi's jeans, propelling the song up the charts. "Should I Stay or Should I Go" includes backing vocals sung in Spanish by Joe Strummer and by Joe Ely, who assisted on the record. Strummer got the idea to sing in Spanish while recording the track; tape operator Eddie Garcia and his mother checked the Spanish lyrics for accuracy.

Also, Today In:

1964 - The Beatles filmed the last day of train scenes for the movie A Hard Day's Night. During their six days of filming aboard a moving train, The Beatles travelled a total of 2,500 miles on the rails.

1970 - Having recently changed their name from Earth to Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward made their concert debut at The Roundhouse, London.

1981 - Robert Plant played a secret gig at Keele University, England with his new band, The Honey Drippers.

1985 - REO Speedwagon started a three-week run at No. 1 on the U.S. singles chart with "Can't Fight This Feeling."

1987 - Legendary singer-songwriter Carole King was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in New York City.

1987 - U2 released The Joshua Tree. It would go on to win a Grammy for Album Of The Year and go Diamond (sales of 10 million copies).

2004 - Tom Jones was banned from wearing tight leather pants by his son — and manager — Mark Jones. Mark told Tom it was time to "dress his age" as he was in danger of becoming a laughingstock at 63.

Birthdays:

Country singer Mickey Gilley is 80.

John Cale of the Velvet Underground is 74.

Procol Harum guitarist Robin Trower is 71.

Ben Folds Five drummer Robert Sledge is 48.

Highlights for Today in Music History are gathered from This Day in Music, Paul Shaffer's Day in Rock, and Wikipedia.


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